(NEW YORK) — Are you susceptible to hypovibochondria? That’s the technical name for phantom vibration syndrome, or rather, when you think your cellphone is vibrating when it really isn’t.
Researcher Larry Rosen says it’s a relatively new phenomenon, spawned by the need to keep a mobile device on your person at all times.
He points to an Indiana University-Purdue University study from a year ago in which 90 percent of students admitted to phantom vibration syndrome when carrying a phone in a front pocket. This naturally leads to checking for a message that’s probably not there.
Rosen doesn’t believe constant checking is necessarily an obsessive compulsive disorder, but it could turn into one. As it happens, one in 10 students actually reported feeling some anxiety from phantom vibrations in the Indiana-Purdue study.
What people should do if they’re feeling even slightly concerned, according to Rosen, is stop using their phone or other devices for short periods of time, such as 30 minutes to an hour.
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